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Thinking American, in a nutshell: When one has lots to say, but time is limited.
May 08, 2007
Responding as a Thinking American, but doing it quickly.
For a man of my admittedly limited intellect, it can be pretty hard to be a good thinking American and be quick at the same time. I hope I get this all down right. As you may or may not know, we are quite busy with our new business, and I’ve been neglecting work on this site because of that, but necessarily so. This is, essentially, an update on what’s been done recently and what’s in the background for future work here.
First, I will try to answer some of the most prevalent “non-public” questions that some of you have in common, then I will point you to the links to pages that have been updated with comments, commentary or dialogues, and then I will go back to work. I’m a little surprised that so many questions have to do with Americanism or the American Ideal, rather than religion.
Anyhow, here goes:
Re Legal Immigration and the Minimum Wage Laws.
Elsewhere in this site I’ve talked about how to get the illegal aliens who are here now to leave on their own, and I don’t want to belabor that point here. And we’re all agreed that our borders must be made more secure, just in the interest of national security; although other reasons are important, they are less important. Americans have a right to national borders, just like every other nation on Earth.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with people crossing our borders in either direction so long as they do so lawfully, obeying the laws of both countries involved. Lots of people do that every single day. Doing it legally means presenting, upon demand, the appropriate immigration papers, passports, visas, green cards, worker’s permits or whatever else is lawfully requested by appropriate border authorities.
Is there a “Preferred” type of immigrant?
Personally, I think most Western nations, including America, have it backwards. We seem to want mostly or only highly educated and prosperous people to come here, to the exclusion of the poor. Yet it is the poor who seek a better life for themselves and their progeny, who are seeking something better, and who hope to be able to proactively build a better life. Which pretty well describes my grandparents, on my mother’s side, and my great grandparents, on my father’s side, who came here poor, and who very proactively built a better life.
Adam Smith (Wealth of Nations) said that any man who enjoys personal security and is free to do so will work to improve his own condition. And that no one can improve his own condition without improving his surroundings. This is the fundamental source of wealth creation. Without even his own knowledge or intent to do so, the proactive working man cooperates with the invisible hand of Capitalism and creates wealth.
The key thing is that they should really be immigrants, who seek to come here to stay, and to become citizens. The illegal aliens who are here now are, for the most part, here to make a buck and then bug out; they have no interest in assimilating into the larger American culture.
Why do I oppose the Minimum Wage?
Because it makes no economic sense. It’s a nonsensical law that is violated every single day because it is so at odds with economic reality. Millions of migrant workers prove my point by working American fields and being paid “under the table” wages that are lower than the minimum wage. Almost every week some “sweat shop” is discovered and reported on in the news in American cities with bunches of laborers paid sub-minimum wages. There is a giant existing market for sub minimum wage work in America. This is not rocket science. The market will be satisfied.
I think some of you have misunderstood me on this. My problem with the illegal aliens is not that some of them are being paid illegally, but that they are here illegally. And my problem with their employers has nothing to do with how much or little they pay these people, but that they employ people who are here illegally.
The overwhelming majority of American workers are employed at a level considerably higher than the minimum wage and are in no real danger of loosing any part of their pay. Any Americans who do not want to work for less than minimum wage do not have to do so. It is clear and obvious that a whole lot of people would have no problem at all with working in America for sub-minimum wages. The whole notion of a minimum wage induces in a population a sense of false security, in that a certain wage is an entitlement that is just due, and does not need to be earned. Big Government has a way of doing that, and establishing itself as the mommy state, and a segment of the population becomes mesmerized, and convinced that the Leviathan State exists to take care of us all.
But every time and in every way that the state interferes with wages or prices or profits the economy suffers in some way. Note that the very Lefty Dems who call for higher minimum wages are the same ones who squeal when unemployment goes up, and who refer to all profits as “obscene”. Grand social planners just can’t leave any part of a free market alone and allow it to operate freely.
How can we eliminate taxes?
First of all, I never said we should, or even could, eliminate taxes; what I said was that we should eliminate income taxes. In fact, what I would prefer, at the federal level, would be to eliminate every form of tax save one: a national sales tax. No income tax, no property tax, no corporate or other business tax, no form of tax at all other than a sales tax, collected at the site and time of purchase. If any other tax were allowed to remain alive, then this would not work, because another sales tax would just join the existing pantheon of taxes and we would merely have one more tax.
One immediate benefit would be that everyone who buys anything retail would pay it, with no way out. Even illegal aliens and other criminals would pay it. Every worker in America would get an immediate huge raise in salary, and every employer in America would lose a huge business expense. Last but not least, no one would need to file a tax return ever again. Think about it: what business is it of the Leviathan State how much money you make? Why should you have to go through this humongous tax return red-tape rigmarole every year?
This would require somehow killing off Social Security taxes. How to do that? Well, pick a date, and call it the SS Date. When the SS Date arrives, everyone who is not yet retired stops paying Social Security taxes, and no one else retires on Social Security. Those already retired continue to collect their retirement. Those not yet retired, as they attain retirement age, are paid the total of what they paid into Social Security plus interest over all those years. With that money, they can buy themselves a paid up annuity, if they wish, and begin collecting their monthly payments.
That could potentially put us into a temporary deficit situation, but, so what? A temporary deficit never hurt anyone, including our first deficit under FDR, and it won’t hurt us either. The important thing is that federal expenditures for Social Security would finally hit a point where they would be increasingly in decline rather than perpetual increase, as the population ages, people die and there are no new retirees.
The inducement for American industry to expand would be huge. The existence of a retail sales tax as the sole form of taxation, meaning among other things no corporate taxation, would be a major attraction to off shore corporations (which is to say, employers) to relocate their operations to America. There are other places they can operate without paying taxes, but there is no place anywhere near as physically secure as America where they wouldn’t pay taxes.
As the federal government would go, eventually, so would the individual states. The first state to abolish all state taxes in favor of a simple state sales tax would set off an extreme competition among states to attract and lure large corporations away from each other. States that abolished state corporate taxes would experience an economic boom, and states that didn’t, wouldn’t.
Comments/dialogue have been added at the end of the Limited War Doctrine page.
A new thread has been opened up at Sidney Airport Security.
The Church and State in Art page has been updated. A long time ago, my personal computer was too limited in capacity to handle lots of graphics all at once. Now that I have a super-duper computer, that’s no longer a problem. So I’ve finally put all the pictures on one page, as I wish I could have done from the beginning. Eventually I’m going to have to do something similar to the Reference/Book Store page(s), but I don’t have time right now. That page will need significant additions, because of planned work (gun control, etc.) for which I have yet to enter my reference books. I’m currently deciding which to do first – the books page, or the gun control page. At the moment, work schedule being what it is, I cannot do either.
A friend sent me some links to some, ahem, educational videos of the homosexual variety, and I have added them at the bottom of the Homo-Nazism page. As I told some of you, look though you may, you will not find any progressive tax recommendation among any of our national founding documents or in the writings of our founders. Where you will find it is in the Communist Manifesto. In a similar manner, the “need” for state schools and/or state indoctrination of the people’s children does not come out of anything in America. It, too, comes out of the Communist Manifesto. Look at the videos and you will see how American “public” school teachers have morphed into typical authoritarian government petty bureaucrats. They do not teach from our ethos; they teach from the “ethos” of the atheistic Leviathan State.
I copied the last dialogues from SANE and wrote a brief eulogy for the NuVo Initiative at SANE Dropping Nuvo. Glad to see it go.
A new “Race” dialogue opened up at Race and Racism Thread.
Comments/dialogue added at the end of the World Oil Supply page.
And, that about wraps it up.
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